Mylan is committed to delivering better health for a better world and this includes our passion to continue fighting HIV in Europe and around the world. We have been part of the fight against HIV/AIDS for more than 10 years and more than 40% of people treated for the disease globally depend on a Mylan antiretroviral (ARV) every day1
In Ireland, there have been great improvements in the treatment of HIV/AIDS and the good news is that for the many living with HIV, progression to AIDS is no longer inevitable. According to a recent audit of HIV services, of the 5,317 people living with HIV in Ireland in 2017, 98% were on antiretroviral treatment and 95% of those were virally suppressed.2
On Saturday 16 June, to mark Irish AIDS Day 2018, HIV Ireland, one of Ireland’s leading HIV patient support organisations, hosted the inaugural “Red Ball” in Dublin to raise awareness and funds in support of those living with HIV and AIDS in Ireland. Colleagues from Mylan Ireland were proud to be part of this important event.
During the event, the Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister) Leo Varadkar T.D., announced that in 2019 the Government will have a programme in place to educate healthcare professionals and the public on Pre Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) and to reimburse PrEP for preventative use.
This fantastic news was warmly welcomed by the 300+ guests who attended the ball and the Prime Minister went on to thank all those present for their work in supporting the fight against this disease in Ireland, stating: '' I am here tonight because I believe we should celebrate the work of HIV Ireland and others, and we should take every opportunity we can to educate ourselves and raise awareness. For over thirty years, HIV Ireland has provided a range of essential free services: counselling, information, advice, education, training, community support, and testing. Every day you fulfil your mandate to help people and that’s thanks to your hard-working staff and dedicated volunteers.''
Today HIV is still one of the most stigmatized medical conditions and with record numbers of people diagnosed with HIV in Ireland last year, there are concerns that a growing ambivalence about the disease is putting increasing numbers of people at risk. More than 500 new cases of HIV were diagnosed in the country, the highest rate since records began.3
As in many European countries, rates have been rising steadily since 2011, with the rate of new infections increasing significantly within the past two years. The figures come while new research shows the life expectancy for young people with HIV in the western world is now as high as 76, helped by ever-improving treatments. Newly released figures from Ireland’s Health Protection Surveillance Centre show that 512 people were diagnosed with the human immunodeficiency virus in 2016. Of these, 77% were male and 23% female. If the trend in new HIV cases in Ireland continues, 2017 will surpass that in 2016.4
At Mylan we are expanding our focus to support HIV treatment in Ireland and our commitment to this public health challenge is that since 2017, PrEP medicine has been available to every retail pharmacy in Ireland.
In Europe, Mylan are the largest supplier of generic HIV medicines across the five largest markets on the continent, providing one out of every three generic ARV tablets used in Italy, France, Germany, Spain and the UK combined.5
1UNAIDS Factsheet, November 2016
5IMS, December 2016
DOP: June 2018